Frequently Asked Questions

Who Pays for Hospice Care and how much does it cost?

Hospice is covered by Medicare, Medicare Advantage plans, Medicaid and most private insurance companies. Hospice is a financial relief to many because services related to the life-limiting illness, such as medication, equipment and supplies, are covered by hospice benefits–with no out-of-pocket expenses. You will not see a bill or copay requirement from Transitions Hospice Care.

What services does hospice care encompass?

Home medical equipment, personal supplies and medications related to the hospice terminal illness.
Around-the-clock access to care
Management of complex pain and other symptoms
Hospice aide for personal hygienic care
Medical social services
Spiritual care and support
Support from volunteers
Short-term inpatient respite care (relief) for family caregivers
Ongoing Grief counseling for the patient, family and friends

Does Hospice provide around the clock 24hr care or sitter services?

Hospice care is provided during regular, intermittent visits, with a nurse available by phone 24 hours a day, seven days a week. If needed, Hospice can help the family arrange for a private hire, around-the-clock care attendant with a list of local sitter agencies available to choose from. The cost of these services are not associated with the hospice insurance benefit and would be the patient/family responsibility.

Does Hospice Care cover the cost of funeral services and/or cremation services?

While hospice does not directly fund funeral service or cremation expense, our Licensed Social Worker may be able to help families tap into potential community resources that may be able to assist in offsetting the expenses. This is based on a demonstrated need and those needs are determined by the outside community resource organization.

Will the certified nurse aides clean your whole house for you?

Certified nurse aides provide personal care such as bathing, shaving, oral care, nail care and changing bed sheets, but housecleaning services are not a part of their daily role. They will provide training for caregivers to safely move, turn, transfer and care for the patient.

Can my doctor still be my doctor if I go on hospice?                                  

Yes. You may continue to see your primary physician as long as you are able to get there. This physician can make home visits if time permits them. If you are on Medicare or Medicaid, you are required to get permission from Hospice to see any other specialist (besides the primary physician) for your terminal condition. Hospice physicians and team members work with your doctor to ensure your clinical and emotional needs are being met and that your care is being carried out appropriately. Your doctor chooses his or her level of participation in your care.

Can I go to the hospital while under hospice care?

While hospice strives to manage pain and other uncomfortable symptoms outside of the hospital setting, a hospice patient always has the choice of whether or not to go to the hospital. The Medicare Hospice Benefit covers short-term general inpatient care in the hospital when a patient’s symptoms can no longer be managed in another care setting. Our hospice just asks you notify our staff prior to going to the ER so our RNs can assist in clinical management of the symptoms and if need be arrange and make contact with the receiving hospital.